Crockpot Franks & Beans - From Scratch!

Who doesn’t love a side of baked beans or a whole bowl of Frank and Beans! Well, to be honest I didn’t until I had them from scratch! I kind of thought baked beans from a can were gross. To me they tasted like a mushy mix of sugar and salt. Like I said, that was until I had them made from scratch, now I can’t stop making and eating them! 

crockpot franks and beans recipe

Making baked beans from scratch is so easy plus this crockpot version is really hard to mess up! 

They’re so good, I almost don’t recommend cooking them in the crock pot as it’s really hard not to munch on it all day, I typically end up doubling this recipe for that reason. The kids and myself usually want a bowl at lunch time then we’ll have it for dinner too! If there are any leftovers, they freeze very nicely for future quick meals as well. 

If you don’t have time to cook them in the crock pot, you can easily cook them in the oven too! That’s what I love about this recipe, it doesn’t have to take all day but it can if you’re home! 

When it comes to ingredients, I prefer to make my own “BBQ” base using brown sugar, liquid smoke and molasses. If you don’t have these things on hand, just omit them and use 3-4 tablespoons of your go-to BBQ sauce instead. 

While the sauce it's self is very forgiving, do not go cheap on your franks! I prefer Kayem personally and no this is not sponsored. I have tried it with other hot dog brands that I will not name and they quickly turned to mush. If you don't have Kayem in your local store, I have heard that Nathan's are also a more firm brand. 

The only thing that can be kind of tricky with this recipe is getting the water and cook-time down. I have made this recipe in 3 different crockpots and it’s crazy how vastly different they all cook. One crockpot I ended up adding an additional ½ cup of water when it was on low and another I had to kick up to a high heat to thicken the sauce. Just keep an eye on it is my best advice, this is not one to leave cooking while you run to the store but that’s pretty typical with most sugary recipes as they tend to heat up faster and thicker quicker. 

To jump into the recipe, you will need; 1 pkg. Hotdogs or 1 Link of Kilbasa, 1 sweet onion, diced, 2 garlic cloves minced, 1 tablespoon smoked paprika, 1 teaspoon chili powder, 1 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper, 1 tablespoons apple cider vinegar, 2 tablespoons molasses, 2 tablespoon dijon mustard, 2.5 tablespoon brown sugar packed, Splash of hot sauce optional, ½ cup hot water, 3 drops of liquid smoke, 1 (15oz) can of diced tomatoes undrained, 3 (12oz) cans of northern beans.

crockpot franks and beans

They may not look pretty but they smell and taste delicious!

Start by dicing and sauteing your garlic and onion over medium to low heat until translucent. Cut your hot dogs into ¼-½ inch sized pieces, keep in mind they will plump up as they cook. 
Next drain and rinse your beans until the water runs clear. I usually leave them in a colander, in the sink to dry off a bit while I continue with the rest of the recipe.
While the beans are drying off, add everything else to your crock pot including your sautéed onions and chopped hot dogs. Mix everything very well making sure to scrape the sides of any seasonings. Once mixed, add in your rinsed beans and turn them in until everything is coated. 

 I will usually cook these on low for 6 hours or high for 3 hours adding ¼ cup of water as needed. Once again this can depend on your crockpot. 

You can also pour everything into a casserole dish, cover tightly with foil and bake at 350 degrees F for 45 mins to an hour or once the sauce is thickened. 

That's it! Hopefully this easy recipe pleases a crowd for you like it does for me! 

1 pkg. Hotdogs or 1 Link of Kilbasa
1 sweet onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1.5 tablespoon smoked paprika
1.5 teaspoon chili powder
1.5 tsp salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
1 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2.5 tablespoons molasses
2 tablespoon dijon mustard
2.5 tablespoon brown sugar packed
1tsp of hot sauce optional
½ cup hot water
1/2 tsp drops of liquid smoke
1 (15oz) can of diced tomatoes undrained
3 (12oz) cans of northern beans
Parsley for Garnish
  1. Prep by dicing the onions and mincing the garlic. Sautee' both until onions are translucent. Cut the hot dogs into ¼-½ sized pieces and drain and rinse the beans into a strainer in a sink.
  2. Next add everything into a crock pot or casserole dish if baking.
  3. Cook low for 6 hours or high for 3 hours or bake at 350 for 45-60 minutes until sauce has thickened. 
  4. Add water a ¼ cup at a time as need
  5. Garnish with some parsley and enjoy!

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